Parasite diversity of European Myotis species with special emphasis on Myotis myotis (Microchiroptera, Vespertilionidae) from a typical nursery roost

Background: Bats belong to one of the most species-rich orders within the Mammalia. They show a worldwide distribution, a high degree of ecological diversification as well as a high diversity of associated parasites and 
Background: Bats belong to one of the most species-rich orders within the Mammalia. They show a worldwide distribution, a high degree of ecological diversification as well as a high diversity of associated parasites and pathogens. Despite their prominent and unique role, the knowledge of their parasite-host-relationships as well as the mechanisms of co-evolutionary processes are, partly due to strict conservation regulations, scarce.
Methods: Juvenile specimens of the greater mouse-eared bat (Myotis myotis) from a roosting colony in Gladenbach (Hesse, Germany) were examined for their metazoan endo-and ectoparasite infections and pathogens. Morphometric data were recorded and the individuals were checked for Lyssavirus-specific antigen using a direct immunofluorescence test. For unambiguous species identification, the bats were analysed by cyt-b sequence comparison.
Results: Myotis myotis were parasitized by the six insect and arachnid ectoparasite species, i.e. Ixodes ricinus, Ischnopsyllus octactenus, Ichoronyssus scutatus, Steatonyssus periblepharus, Spinturnix myoti and Cimex dissimilis. Additionally, the nematode Molinostrongylus alatus and the cestode Vampirolepis balsaci were recorded. Each bat was parasitized by at least four species. The parasites showed partially extreme rates of infection, never recorded before, with more than 1,440 parasites per single host. Ichoronyssus scutatus, Steatonyssus periblepharus, Vampirolepis balsaci and Molinostrongylus alatus are recorded for the first time in Germany. A checklist for Europe is presented containing records of 98 parasite species of 14 Myotis species.
Conclusions: The Myotis myotis from Gladenbach (Hesse, Germany) were parasitized by a diverse parasite fauna with high infestation rates. We assume that in juvenile Myotis the number of parasites is generally higher than in adults due to only later acquired immune competence and behavioural adaptations. Our results revealed new insights into parasite fauna of M. myotis and European bats in general. The finding of endoparasitic cyclophyllidean cestodes that have a two-host lifecycle is, considering the stationary behaviour of the juvenile bats, rather unusual and suggests a non-predatory transmission mechanism (e.g. via autoinfection).
A new insight gained from the collated literature was that the European wide composition of the Myotis parasite fauna is dominated by a few specific taxonomic groups in Europe.
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Metadaten
Author:Raphael Frank, Thomas Kuhn, Antje Werblow, Andrew Liston, Judith Kochmann, Sven Klimpel
URN:urn:nbn:de:hebis:30:3-371738
DOI:http://dx.doi.org/10.1186/s13071-015-0707-7
ISSN:1756-3305
Parent Title (English):Parasites & vectors
Publisher:BioMed Central
Place of publication:London
Document Type:Article
Language:English
Date of Publication (online):2015/02/15
Date of first Publication:2015/02/15
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2015/03/22
Tag:Roosting place
Ectoparasites; Myotis myotis; Spinturnix myoti
Volume:8
Issue:101
Pagenumber:13
Note:
© 2015 Frank et al.; licensee BioMed Central. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly credited. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
HeBIS PPN:368906906
Institutes:Senckenbergische Naturforschende Gesellschaft
Institut für Ökologie, Evolution und Diversität
Biodiversität und Klima Forschungszentrum (BiK-F)
Dewey Decimal Classification:590 Tiere (Zoologie)
Sammlungen:Universitätspublikationen
Sondersammelgebiets-Volltexte
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 4.0

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